Grab those sunglasses – potentially.
Athlon Sports has recently released its acclaimed 2022 College Football Preview magazine, which is chock-full of great information and insight. Athlon has gone through all 131 teams and every conference to break down all the vital information for each. The college football season is sneaking up quickly and will be here in just over two months.
One of the interesting sections of the preview is the bowl projections. Bowl projections are one of the hardest elements of the season to predict because of the countless variables that can affect a team in-season. However, projections do give a nice idea of where the bar is close to sitting.
According to Athlon Sports, Tennessee is projected for Orlando, Florida in a VRBO Citrus Bowl matchup against the Wisconsin Badgers.
See Also from RTI: What Opposing Coaches Are Saying About Tennessee Football
The Citrus Bowl is often considered to be at the top of the bowl tiers excluding the New Years Six and playoff games. The Vols will likely be looking at a 9-3, 10-2 win/loss range to be in consideration for the Citrus Bowl.
The VRBO Citrus Bowl will take place on Jan. 2, 2023, at 1:00 p.m. ET. The game will be held in Orlando’s Camping World Stadium.
Despite three bowl games in Florida in the last six years, Camping World Stadium is a bowl venue that Tennessee has not been to yet.
Tennessee’s Taxslayer Bowl appearance in 2015 and Gator Bowl appearance in 2020 were both held in Jacksonville’s TIAA Bank Field/EverBank Field – the home of the Jacksonville Jaguars. In 2016, the Vols defeated Northwestern in the Outback Bowl held at Raymond James Stadium, which is home to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
Tennessee’s Last Five Bowl Games
- TaxSlayer Bowl – Tennessee 45, Iowa 28 – 1/2/15 – EverBank Field
- Outback Bowl – Tennessee 45, Northwestern 6 – 1/1/16 – Raymond James Stadium
- Music City Bowl – Tennessee 38, Nebraska 24 – 12/30/16 – Nissan Stadium
- Gator Bowl – Tennessee 23, Indiana 22 – 1/2/20 – TIAA Bank Field
- Music City Bowl – Purdue 47, Tennessee 45 – 12/30/21 – Nissan Stadium
A berth in the Citrus Bowl doesn’t allow for a ton of room for mistakes in the regular season. If Tennessee wants to be playing in Orlando or better come this winter, the Vols will have to take down some marquee teams on the schedule.
Let’s give Tennessee three losses on the year – Alabama, Georgia, and LSU. That means the Vols will have no room for error in games against Pittsburgh, Florida, Kentucky, and South Carolina. In reality, any of those teams can be switched, too. If Tennessee loses to, say, Pitt or Florida early in the season, that LSU game turns into a much more critical game.
VRBO Citrus Bowl Recent History
- 1/1/22 – Kentucky 20, Iowa 17
- 1/1/21 – Northwestern 35, Auburn 19
- 1/1/20 – Alabama 35, Michigan 16
- 1/1/19 – Kentucky 27, Penn State 24
The Athlon Sports 2022 College Football Preview is now available for purchase in local bookstores and is also ready to purchase online.
I would certainly take that right now. It would definitely mean an improvement over last year.